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Do Women Make Better Bosses? 403

Hugh Pickens writes "David Mielach reports on a new study which finds that women in management positions lead in a more democratic way, allowing employees to participate in decision-making and establishing interpersonal channels of communication. 'In line with known gender differences in individual leadership, we find that in workplaces with more women managers, more individualized employee feedback is carried out,' says study author Eduardo Melero. 'Likewise, we can see evidence, although weaker, that in these workplaces decisions are made more democratically and more interpersonal channels of communications are established.' The research was based on data from the Workplace Employment Relationships Survey, a survey of workplaces in the United Kingdom. Melero analyzed this data by looking at the number of women in management positions in companies and the leadership tactics employed at those companies. He found increased communication between management and employees in companies with women in management positions led to more well-informed decisions, since employee feedback will be utilized in the decision-making process. Still, correlation does not equal causation. 'One might question the direction of the relation: is it women managers who are the behind these policies, or is it that more progressive organizations are more accessible for women leaders than other workplaces (PDF)?'"

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